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Dwayne B.
Dwayne B., Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 32323
Experience:  Began practicing law in 1992
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Collection charges/contract issue Trying to hire someone for

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Collection charges/contract issue
Trying to hire someone for collecting a judgement. One company had the contract said that the client pays for all legal fees and other fees, then the money recovered will be 50/50. Is this kind of contract normal? What if the fees get above half of the judgement amount? Also, if the creditor only has the debtor's name and rough age (+/- 6 to 7 months), and previous addresses, but the last name might be changed if recently married, is it still be possible for the agent to find the debtor and collect the money? Will it be better to hire a lawyer to collect than to hire a collection company?
Submitted: 22 days ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  Dwayne B. replied 22 days ago.

Hello and thank you for contacting us. This is Dwayne B. and I’m an expert here and looking forward to assisting you today.

Expert:  Dwayne B. replied 22 days ago.

Is this kind of contract normal?

Yes, it is pretty common.

What if the fees get above half of the judgement amount?

I'm not sure what you mean by this, can you rephrase?

is it still be possible for the agent to find the debtor and collect the money?

Yes, it is still possible. Once they get the Social Security Number you can follow them.

Will it be better to hire a lawyer to collect than to hire a collection company?

Naturally, I think the lawyer is more likely to collect and to do so more quickly. However, lawyers don't take all cases, it ha to be enough money to justify the case and, in addition, the debtor has to have some type of assets the lawyer can reach. You may want to schedule an appointment and talk to the lawyer and see what they think. You can always go to the collection company if the lawyer doesn't take the case.

If your question(s) have been answered then I'd offer my best wishes to you and ask that you please not forget to leave a Positive Rating so I receive credit for my work. Of course, please feel free to ask any follow up questions in this thread. I want to be sure that all of your questions are answered.

Customer: replied 20 days ago.

The original judgement amount was about $6k, I don't know what all kinds of fees would be. Say if they were only able to collect $3~4k back, but the fee were about 1.5~2k, that would mean that I don't get anything back.

Do the lawyer or agent have special ways to find people's SS#? Yes, if you have the SS#, then everything will be easier. With just name (and possibly change of name) and previous addresses, will they be able to get SS#?

Expert:  Dwayne B. replied 20 days ago.

There are a number of ways to find people's addresses. You can use subpoenas, you can hire a private investigator, etc. There are also a few websites that are only available to lawyers or law enforcement personnel. However, the most common way is to use a subpoena and get info from utility companies, banks, etc. Usually you can get a SSN through that process.

Customer: replied 20 days ago.

Will the agent/lawyer to find the SS#, or the creditor need to find it first? If subpoena the utility or bank, do they obligate to provide the SSN? Also, all the fees for subpoenas, and/or private investigators are paid by the creditor, right? Will there be anything left for the creditor in this case after paying all these fees?

Expert:  Dwayne B. replied 20 days ago.

Usually the lawyer will take care of everything. Anything that the creditor can be provide will be helpful, but if they don't have it then the lawyer can find everything.

Anyone that receives a subpoena will either have to provide the information or file a Motion to Quash the Subpoena and then there will be a hearing on the issue.

Typically the creditor pays the fees associated with the case but normally they aren't a tremendous amount. I can't say for sure how much will be left for creditor because it depends on a case by case basis. Certainly it is possible that a case could have enough in fees that it wipes out most of the award but I can't think of one that I've ever seen where that happened.

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